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The Winter Art Show

June 2024
1min read

Under the darkly glowing roil of a furious sky, desperate people driven before the blast struggle uphill from despair toward hope. Hope takes the form of Richard Nxon in a white trench coat. In December 1956 the Vice President visited Austria’s Hungarian border, where a refugee camp was helping cope with the two hundred thousand Hungarians who had fled the savage Soviet repression of their three-month revolt. The event inspired the expatriate Hungarian artist Ferenc Daday to produce an astonishing anachronism, a grand allegorical painting eleven feet long . The San Francisco Chronicle ’s, critic dismissed the work as “Stalinoid ‘social realism.’” But surely it has at least as much to do with Benjamin West’s Death of Wolfe . In any event, nobody can dispute the claim of a member of the Nixon Presidential Library that it is “one of the biggest oil paintings in the Los Angeles area. It joined the library’s collections last August.

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